Highland Road Park Observatory 20OGS

Talk or ask questions about the hardware used in astronomy.
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Christopher K.
Posts: 5487
Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
Location: Baton Rouge, LA

Highland Road Park Observatory 20OGS

Post by Christopher K. »

The main telescope at HRPO is a twenty-inch from Optical Guidance Systems. Since it's premiere in 1997 it has brought the grandeur of the skies to tens of thousands of visitors. This scope has been used (mainly by BRAS members) to discover dozens of asteroids. This scope is open to the public most Fridays from 8:30pm to 10pm, and most Saturdays from 7:30pm to 10pm.

John Stiles of Optical Guidance Systems recently visited and assisted Professor Greg Guzik in installing new components for operating the 20OGS. The operating program now in use is The Sky X. The telescope now slews to object much more quickly than before.

Though the scope is already in use, HRPO will host a reopening party on 15 March from 7pm to 10pm. This party is superimposed over the March Evening Sky Viewing Plus. So there will be refreshments along with the science demos, sky tour and marshmallow roast! The operator that night will probably be current BRAS President Merrill Hess, who helped discover five of the asteroids.

As usual, there is free admission to the telescope (and to all HRPO telescopes during public programming).

Most of these images were taken with the 20OGS:
http://hrpo.lsu.edu/research/images.html

About Optical Guidance Systems:
http://www.opticalguidancesystems.com/

Christopher K.
Posts: 5487
Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
Location: Baton Rouge, LA

Re: Highland Road Park Observatory 20OGS

Post by Christopher K. »

Tonight's forecast is exceptional for a subtropical climate summer. From 8:30pm to 10pm, NOAA predicts the rain chance will stay below 30%, the cloud cover will stay below 60% and the humidity will stay below 90%. Add to that Attila Danko's predictions for average transparency and good seeing, and I must recommend that anyone who can make it to HRPO tonight come join Professor Greg Stacy as he operates the 20OGS.

Christopher K.
Posts: 5487
Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
Location: Baton Rouge, LA

Re: Highland Road Park Observatory 20OGS

Post by Christopher K. »

Tonight's NOAA forecast for 9pm isn't bad...
precipation potential, 5%
cloud cover, 16%
relative humidity, 76%


I strongly recommended attending sky viewing at HRPO from 8:30pm to 10pm tonight.

The operator tonight is BRAS President Merrill Hess.

Christopher K.
Posts: 5487
Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
Location: Baton Rouge, LA

Re: Highland Road Park Observatory 20OGS

Post by Christopher K. »

Although the rain chance tonight is negligible, the thin clouds are covering most of the sky. However, Professor Hynes will attempt viewing. Program Aide Jordan will be co-operating.

Christopher K.
Posts: 5487
Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
Location: Baton Rouge, LA

Re: Highland Road Park Observatory 20OGS

Post by Christopher K. »

There is a fifteen percent chance of precipitation at 7pm, according to NOAA, with the chance increasing as the sky darkens. We will attempt viewing with the 20OGS without lowering the dropout. Of course, we'll shut down immediately if rain begins. Tonight's operator is BRAS member Peter Lazar.

Christopher K.
Posts: 5487
Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
Location: Baton Rouge, LA

Re: Highland Road Park Observatory 20OGS

Post by Christopher K. »

As can be seen, I've been posting forecasts for Evening Sky Viewing, which takes place Friday and Saturday nights at HRPO. I have started an actual thread called "HRPO Evening Sky Viewing, 2014". Please refer to that thread from now on for forecast information.

Christopher K.
Posts: 5487
Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
Location: Baton Rouge, LA

Re: Highland Road Park Observatory 20OGS

Post by Christopher K. »

As many know already, there is a movement to create a city called "St. George". The boundaries would encompass the southern portion of East Baton Rouge Parish; that area includes Highland Road Park.

If St. George comes to be, the Baton Rouge Astronomical Society will make a request within thirty business days to have a meeting with the new city's City Council and Public Works Department, to inquire how they will assist in protecting the natural view of the skies over HRPO.

More information:
http://www.wafb.com/2019/02/25/proposal ... s-forward/

Christopher K.
Posts: 5487
Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
Location: Baton Rouge, LA

Re: Highland Road Park Observatory 20OGS

Post by Christopher K. »

Yesterday, BREC Maintenance removed the old hydraulic cylinders from the 20OGS dome. One of the cylinders will now be shipped to the original provider so duplicates can be made.

The shutter retraction problem has been solved. LSU P&A found the failure in the electrical connection between the computer and the dome, and repaired it. Now LSU P&A will replace the battery, and retraction will be automated again.

Christopher K.
Posts: 5487
Joined: October 12th, 2009, 3:28 pm
Location: Baton Rouge, LA

Re: Highland Road Park Observatory 20OGS

Post by Christopher K. »

On Friday 23 August from 7pm to 10pm a brand-new annual program will premiere at the Highland Road Park Observatory. Entitled "Celestial Fantasia", the program is geared toward professional teachers, informal educators, homeschoolers and students. Its goals is to illustrate the status of HRPO an an asset for...
*STEM-oriented field trips
*extra-credit visits (lectures and observing/sketching)
*assistance for science fair projects

Professor Greg Stacy of LSU will be operating the 20OGS that evening, weather permitting...
https://www.lsu.edu/physics/people/faculty/stacy.php

There is no admission fee. More information: http://hrpo.lsu.edu/programs/special2.html

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